Solar plus Storage for Resilient Communities

The Solar plus Storage for Resilient Communities program funds solar and battery back-up power so community buildings can provide essential services when the power goes out. Grants support installation as well as planning work for solar plus storage systems at community buildings, including schools, community centers, libraries, and other buildings owned by local, state, and Tribal governments in Washington.

Background

The Washington 2021 State Energy Strategy recommended a “resilience hub” program to fund solar and energy storage projects at community centers to serve essential needs during power outages, including project planning and development assistance.

In 2022, the Solar plus Storage for Resilient Communities program was established in the state’s supplemental operating budget (Section 128, Subsection 227, on page 145).

The program is currently under development. These initial guidelines are based on Commerce’s initial interpretation of the legislation and may help you begin planning to apply, but final guidelines will be published when funding opportunities are announced.

Which projects are eligible?

The legislation defines eligible buildings as K-12 schools, community colleges, community centers, recreation centers, libraries, and other buildings and infrastructure owned by local, state, and Tribal governments in Washington.

Projects must include the ability to operate independently of the grid during outages and include solar and battery systems. Projects may add batteries to existing solar installations.

Planning projects may include identifying sites, community outreach and engagement, feasibility studies, and developing cost estimates, specifications, and other early design work.

How much funding is available?

An estimated $35 million will be available as grants or technical assistance.

Contact

Jill Eikenhorst, Solar Programs Supervisor
Jill.Eikenhorst@Commerce.wa.gov
360-522-0000

Jennifer Grove, Managing Director
Jennifer.Grove@Commerce.wa.gov
360-763-2213